Brown Bluff, Antarctica

Dec 11, 2018 - National Geographic Explorer

The sun was out and the sky was clear, so this morning all guests set foot on the mainland of Antarctica at Brown Bluff in the Antarctic Sound. This site has towering volcanic cliffs, up to 745m (2,225 ft), rising from just beyond the water’s edge. The breathtaking sight is made even more so by the thousands of Adélie penguins packed into the area between the cliffs and shore. 

On this beautiful morning, some guests wandered slowly and carefully near a breeding penguin colony and witnessed tiny chicks being fed by their parents. Other guests took a steep, scenic trail in the opposite direction to finish at a glacier.

After lunch, National Geographic Explorer continued heading south toward Devil Island. The sun was shining, the winds were light, and the sea was calm and flat. The scenery was incredible. Suddenly, we spotted an area of fast ice and sheltered water. The ship parked in the ice and we grabbed the opportunity to launch kayaks.

For the next few hours, the very happy and excited guests paddled around the remote wilderness in glorious Antarctic sunshine. We packed up just before dinner and headed north around the top of the peninsula, then down the west coast. National Geographic Explorer spent the next few hours maneuvering around large and small icebergs—often occupied by Adélie penguins—glowing in the afternoon light. What a majestic end to the day.

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About the Author

Martin Cohen


Martin grew up in Melbourne playing cricket and Australian Rules football. While growing up, and to his parents’ dismay, Martin brought home and kept a menagerie of wildlife including frogs, lizards, turtles, and even poisonous snakes!

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